If your loved one has had a stroke, his or her doctor will prescribe a variety of medications upon release from the hospital. As a caregiver, it’s important that you become familiar with these medications and their purpose in managing symptoms and the stroke recovery process. Read on to learn more about common categories of post-stroke medications, presented by the professional Naples stroke caregivers from Home Care Assistance.
Blood Pressure Medication
High blood pressure is the single biggest risk factor for stroke, especially for people who have already had a stroke. Your loved one will probably be prescribed medication to lower blood pressure. There are a variety of classes of this type of medicine, also known as “hypertensives.” Some decrease blood volume, while others help dilate the blood vessels or slow heart rate.
Blood Clot Prevention
After a stroke, it’s important to prevent clots from forming. Two common types of medication, anticoagulant medicines and antiplatelet medicines, are typically prescribed for this purpose. Anticoagulants, such as warfarin, keep blood clots from forming and existing clots from getting bigger. These are often prescribed for people who have atrial fibrillation. Antiplatelet medications prevent platelets in the blood from sticking together. Most people can take aspirin for this purpose, though other medications are sometimes prescribed.
Statins are types of drugs that lower high cholesterol, another risk factor for stroke. Because statins can have side effects, it’s important to combine these drugs with other cholesterol lowering measures, such as diet and exercise. If your loved one needs assistance or encouragement for eating a healthy diet and engaging in regular exercise, a part-time or live-in caregiver in Naples can offer tailored care and support, while also watching out for symptoms indicating the risk of a second stroke.
According to the National Stroke Association, 1 in 4 Americans who has a stroke will have another stroke. In addition, risk for stroke rises 40 percent within the five years after an initial stroke. That’s why it’s so important for your family member to take these preventive medications as prescribed, as well as make lifestyle changes such as eating a nutritious diet, exercising as much as possible, and quitting smoking. For more information about senior stroke, reach out to Home Care Assistance of Naples, FL at (239) 449-4701 and schedule a complimentary, no-obligation consultation with a friendly Care Manager.